The Special FLTC Meeting on Thursday 12th October, open to all staff in the faculty, explored our big blue sky ideas for active learning in the curriculum:
We drew inspiration from PVC L&T’s Learning for the Future:
What we know: benefits
We discussed the positive impact on student learning:
- moving towards deeper learning (Stranger-Hall, 2011; Pachman, 2016)
- enhancing future retrieval (Kornell et al., 2009)
- developing metacognition (Gijselaers, 1996)
- improving affective dimensions (Landis, 2000; Solominides, 2013)
and staff teaching practices:
- high degree of freedom and creativity
- opens up so many possibilities
- doesn’t haven’t to be overly complicated
- simple but effective strategies
Our experiments: testing the water
- our insights from the live streaming pilot
- our strategies for making lectures interactive with Echo360’s Active Learning Platform and other tools
- and the impact on our MQ students (see FoHS experiments).
When it comes to active learning, there is no ‘one size fits all’, so we propose to take an approach of multiplicity, diversity and inclusivity.
In full #bigbluesky mode, we showcased:
1. Peer Instruction
We took inspiration from the peer instruction method pioneered by Eric Mazur at Harvard university – see also video (5:02):
2. Student Peer Assessment
The study reported that the process led to:
- better understanding of the assessment criteria
- re-examination of their own work
- motivation to access new primary literature before commenting
- improved quality of thought in both reviewer and reviewee
- new perspectives on domain literature.
We invited Nick Wilson, Department of Linguistics, to share his recent LING219 experience with a learner (group) generated digital media task (i.e. video assessment) paired with peer review using the Peergrade tool. Stay tuned for more on this!
3. ‘Wicked’ Problems
And we rounded out our inspiration with ‘wicked’ problems (Markauskaite & Goodyear, 2017) – bringing real-world, authentic, ill-structured problems into the curriculum (vs. ‘tame’, defined, single-solution problems) through:
(i) Team-Based Learning
We showcased the InteDashboard tool, used by our colleagues in the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences – and affectionately referred to as Totally Brilliant Learning…man – and the team-based learning approach developed by the Duke Medical School:
- pre-class work
- an individual quiz using points weighting
- a team quiz (one answer only)
- identify what you still don’t understand
- clarification duties are assigned to other groups
We also recognised examples of current practice in our local community:
(ii) Students as teachers
Tracy Worthington, Department of Educational Studies, using walking galleries:
(iii) Students as researchers
And Bianca De Witt and David Kaplan, Department of Cognitive Sciences, using a research-driven approach with the aide of the Emotiv EPOC+ system:
We concluded with some cross-department brainstorming about project ideas for the future.
And now, you’re all caught up on active learning.